This super easy Mexican-inspired Elote Corn Dip is made with frozen corn so it comes together quickly – under 5 minutes – and is packed with flavor! It’s perfect to make ahead and serve at BBQs and potlucks or on Taco Tuesday!
If you, too, are a lover of all things Mexican-inspired and appetizer dip recipes, then you, my friend, are going to love this one.
If you also love quick and easy recipes that are perfect to serve at get-togethers with friends, can be made ahead of time for big BBQs and potlucks, and that are made with simple ingredients, then you’re definitely in the right place.
This elote corn dip – or as I sometimes call it corn salad – is going to rock your world.
What is Elote?
Elote literally translates to “corn” in Spanish. Elotes are most commonly known as the popular Mexican street food that is corn on the cob that has been grilled so it’s nice and charred, then slathered with a creamy mixture of chili, mayo, cotija cheese, garlic, and cilantro. And of course a juicy lime wedge.
It’s the perfect street food as it’s easy to enjoy on the go, but turning it into a dip – technically then called Esquites – makes it more accessible to serve at parties, to enjoy over tacos, or to have it ready to go in the fridge when the craving strikes.
Ingredients for Street Corn Dip
So, elote dip is basically all the ingredients of traditional corn-on-the-cob elote combined together into a salsa-like mixture ready to be dipped into or hey, enjoyed by the spoonful as a side salad.
To make this dip recipe, you’ll need just a few simple ingredients that pack a whole lot of flavor.
- Corn Kernels: I use frozen corn to make this recipe super quick. I highly recommend finding frozen roasted corn kernels to mimic the fire-roasted flavor that comes from grilling corn in classic elotes.
- Mayonnaise: a little mayonnaise goes a long way in this dip to add the creaminess we’re looking for and a little tang. You can also substitute Greek yogurt or sour cream.
- Scallion: love it for the mild onion flavor it adds to the dip; feel free to use red onion for more of an onion-POW.
- Garlic: a must!
- Chili Powder: you’ve gotta add some in this dip, there’s just a little to keep it mild- so it’s not spicy – it just adds a wonderful flavor. You can add less, or more, depending on your preferred spice level.
- Cilantro: the freshness is key.
- Cotija Cheese: find it grated, or substitute grated parmesan cheese.
- Fresh Lime: the acidity brings out the flavors and adds a wonderful depth to the dip.
Trader Joe’s almost always has bags of fire-roasted corn in their freezer section. I have also seen it at Whole Foods and in local grocery stores – just take a look!
How to Make Elote Dip
This is EASY, like so easy you’re going to make it on repeat all summer long. Memorial Day? Check. Weekend BBQs? Check. Margarita happy hour? Check. 4th of July? Check. I won’t go on, because I think you get the point…
- Thaw the corn under running water or in the microwave. It doesn’t need to be hot, because we’re serving this dip cold (although, you do you if you want a warm dip it’s yummy too!).
- While the corn is thawing (although it doesn’t take long) whisk together the mayo, scallion, garlic, cilantro, cheese, chili powder, and lime juice. Of course, add salt and pepper to taste. Salt is a must to bring out the flavors – and be sure to taste test.
- Taste test again for good measuring, adjusting any of the flavors as needed.
- Garnish with more cilantro, cheese, and chili powder if you’d like, then enjoy!
What to Serve with Mexican Corn Dip
Grab a big bag of tortilla chips and serve them alongside the dip for easy dipping. It’s the perfect combination.
This is also the perfect kind of recipe to serve as a side salad with tacos, enchiladas, or tossed into a burrito bowl. And it’s a wonderful addition to a Mexican-inspired charcuterie board. Serve it in a cup for individual enjoyment, too.
Storage & Make-Ahead Tips
This dip is perfect for making ahead of time because the flavors will meld together as it sits. Feel free to make it up to a day in advance and store in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.
For leftovers, store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 4 days. This dip does not freeze well, but the good news is there are so many ways to repurpose leftovers throughout the week!
Recipe Tips and Notes
- Use fresh sweet corn in the summer; just char it on the grill or over a gas stove.
- Add jalapeno for an extra spicy kick, or a few dashes of hot sauce.
- Use half sour cream in place of the mayo for a little lighter dip, or substitute Mexican crema.
- It’s perfect for potlucks because it can be served at room temperature; but be sure to place it back in the fridge after it’s been out no longer than 2 hours.
- If you can’t find cotija and/or parmesan cheese, sub feta crumbs for a unique twist.
- Double the recipe as needed; it’s a smaller batch recipe but you can easily double or triple to feed a crowd!
5-Minute Elote Corn Dip
- 2 cups frozen fire roasted corn, thawed
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons scallion, white and light green parts, finely chopped (reserve tops for garnish)
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder, more to taste and garnish
- ½ lime, juiced, more to taste
- 2 Tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped
- 2 Tablespoons crumbled cotija cheese, or grated parmesan
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Thaw the frozen corn according to package directions, or by placing it in a bowl of water or in the microwave in 30-second intervals. Drain, if in water.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the rest of the ingredients until combined, then stir in the thawed corn until coated. Taste test for salt and spice levels, adjusting as needed.
- Serve with tortilla chips or in cups and enjoy! Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information provided for this recipe is only an estimate. The accuracy of the facts listed is not and cannot be guaranteed.